Alternatives to Suspension and Expulsion

Despite their wide-spread use, disciplinary exclusions are largely ineffective in reducing problem behaviors. Research shows that the rate of students who have been suspended on multiple occasions ranges between 35 and 42 percent of all students. This suggests that suspensions do not serve as a deterrent for misbehavior. In fact, suspensions may reinforce the use of problem behaviors for students who wish to escape or avoid school. Many school administrators use exclusionary disciplinary measures not because they wish to remove students from the opportunities to learn, but because they need to do something, and they don’t know what else to do (Skiba & Sprague, 2008).